Carly Peruccio speaks at our 2016 Scholarship Recipient Reception

Throughout her four years at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, Carly was on the receiving end of incredible generosity, which she describes as a gift; it is a gift that she has chosen to “pay forward” in a myriad of ways.

Carly, a graduate of Manchester High School, is a 2012 Hartford Foundation scholarship recipient. The generosity of donors who contributed to her Hartford Foundation scholarship helped make Bates a financially feasible option for Carly and her family. Once on the college campus, she encountered even more generosity—from professors and friends who were eager to share their wisdom and talents with her. She also received generous grants from the college that helped to enhance and enrich her classroom learning.

One of the most meaningful acts of generosity Carly experienced occurred in the summer after her freshman year, when she followed up on an announcement from a professor and received an opportunity to assist with classes for immigrants at Lewiston’s Adult Learning Center. Helping with English classes there became the highlight of her summer.

Because of this experience, Carly was inspired to co-found Experience Exchange in her sophomore year. This was a pilot project to promote relationships between Bates students and asylum-seeking members of the Lewiston community. Experience Exchange was designed to encourage cross- cultural understanding, and offered participants the opportunity to exchange English and French lessons, share cultural dishes and engage in meaningful conversations.

Carly continued her work with the Adult Learning Center and eventually began leading her own conversations groups there. After her second year at Bates, Carly received a scholarship to teach English as a second language at the center during her summer break. She taught immigrants, asylum-seekers and refugees from more than ten countries, and her work there encouraged post-graduation plans.

During her time at Bates, Carly majored in anthropology and minored in French and Francophone studies. As a participant in her college’s Migration and Transnational Identity program, she conducted an independent research project studying the role of female mountain guides in a male- dominated industry, and was awarded additional funding from Bates to perform enhanced research overseas. During the summer of 2015, she spent nine weeks living in Marrakech and Imlil, Morocco. Carly performed fieldwork involving participant observation by hiking in Morocco’s High Atlas mountain ranges, and conducted interviews with guides, professors and others in the hiking industry. She was able to further develop her French language skills, and her studies both complemented and enriched her academic interests.

In June 2016—just four days after graduating from Bates College—Carly addressed the Hartford Foundation’s 2016-17 scholarship awardees at the 12th annual Scholarship Recipient Reception, held at the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford. She offered fresh reflections of a college graduate, speaking about the value of her Foundation scholarship and offering advice to the new recipients. She shared, “I’ve learned from my own time as a college student that one of the best ways to show thanks for that which you cannot fully repay is to be proud of your work, whatever form it takes.”

Carly has a lot to be proud of, and she credits Bates with helping her transform into a more conscious citizen, student and individual.